Bishop Robert Brennan visited Bay Ridge Jan. 25, leading Mass at St. Patrick’s Church and spending time with students at the parish’s academy and at Xaverian H.S.
Brennan, who succeeded Bishop Nicholas DiMarzio on Nov. 30, joined the St. Patrick’s kindergarten class for story time and hot chocolate.
Father Michael Falce was thrilled that Brennan chose St. Patrick’s for his first visit to a Brooklyn school.
“It was wonderful to see him interacting with the boys and girls in the academy,” Falce said. “They had questions prepared that you would expect children to ask, like what his favorite food was or if he played sports – things that they don’t necessarily get to ask a priest or a bishop. Seeing his humanity was great.”
The students and staff of Xaverian H.S., 7100 Shore Road, were also thrilled by Brennan’s visit.
“Our new bishop was able to see first-hand just what it means to be a Clipper,” the school said on Facebook. “We are thankful for the time spent in prayer and in thoughtful discussion of our faith.”
Brennan then led a Mass and a Deanery Synod Meeting at St. Patrick’s.
“A Synod meeting is a listening session that is part of the plan announced by the Pope earlier this year for the church worldwide,” said John Quaglione, deputy press secretary for the Diocese of Brooklyn. “This process encourages the participation of the faithful of each diocese in the preparation of a report to be sent to Rome on the future of the church.”
The deanery includes St. Anselm, Our Lady of Angels, St. Andrew, St. Bernadette, St. Ephrem. and Our Lady of Guadalupe.
During the Mass, Brennan thanked his hosts and said he enjoyed his visit.
“It’s nice to be together with so many people here,” he said. “You’ve done me a great favor. I want to meet and encounter as many people as possible in these early days.”